President Donald Trump vowed Thursday to protect the ability for Americans to buy health insurance, even if they had pre-existing health conditions.
The president outlined the three pillars of his plan: more choice, reduced costs, and better care for Americans.
The president said he would develop plans for 60 percent less, opening up short-term insurance plans that could be short term customized plans, and even make insurance premiums tax-deductible.
He noted that the coronavirus pandemic increased the numbers of American patients using the option of telehealth, especially after his administration expanded coverage for telehealth appointments.
“Through these and other reforms we are putting American patients back in charge and we’re putting them first,” Trump said.
Another part of his plan to reduce costs, he explained, was a plan to end surprise medical billing.
“For years patients have been shocked to receive unexpected bills for thousands of dollars they never agreed to,” he said.
He said that more price transparency would be great for good doctors and good hospitals and bad for underperforming doctors.
“The days of ripping off American patients are over,” Trump said.
The president also spoke about reducing the costs of prescription drugs by making sure that America was paying the same price as other countries by getting rid of the “favored nation clause” – a project that Trump has frequently discussed throughout his presidency.
“The Obama Biden administration caved to Big Pharma and allowed drug prices to explode,” he said.
He pointed to the recent ads paid for by pharmaceutical companies against his reelection as proof that he was making a difference.
The president also proposed that Medicare beneficiaries would receive a $200 debit card in the mail to help pay for prescription drugs.
“I will always take care of our wonderful senior citizens,” Trump said. “Joe Biden won’t be doing this.”
He said that the cost savings by ending the favored nations clause would help pay for the program.
The president also announced that he would create Medicare plans the would cap insulin costs at $35 a month.
Pivotal to the president’s plan was the signing of an Executive Order making covering pre-existing conditions the “official policy” of the United States.
The executive order does not change existing laws but sets a marker for future health care policies and upcoming executive actions to reduce costs.
The president expressed his frustration that Democrats continued to campaign on the idea that Republicans and President Trump would eliminate preexisting conditions.
“Any health care reform legislation that comes to my desk from Congress must protect the preexisting conditions or I will not sign it,” Trump said.
The president explained that although he “inherited” Obamacare, he was able to adjust it and even make it unrecognizable after getting rid of the individual mandate.
“It was a disaster, and it was really the essence of Obamacare,” Trump said.
He did not mention Republican’s failed attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare but said that any future health care would have to cover pre-existing conditions.
The president also acknowledged the fact that his administration was supporting a court case to overturn Obamacare, calling it an “ill-conceived plan” that was still too expensive.
“If we win, we will have a better and less expensive plan that will always protect individuals with pre-existing conditions,” he promised.
If the administration lost the case at the Supreme Court, he explained, what was left of Obamacare would still cover pre-existing conditions.